Collaborate, Create, Communicate

Using ICTs to their advantage: Agricultural R4D community branches out

ICRISAT campus – a beautiful, sprawling landscape with wide open spaces  – conducive for thinking out-of-the proverbial ‘box’.

And out-of-the-box ideas are what the global agricultural research for development community aims to achieve in meetings this week from the 7th to 11th December in Hyderabad, India.

The Information & Communication Management (ICM) and Agricultural Research for Development & Innovation Event seeks to address emerging challenges and build on opportunities which were identified in the Science Forum held in June 09 on how ICTs are transforming agricultural science, research and technology creation.

 Jointly organized by GFAR, FAO, CGIAR and APAARI, this event is timely. The booming use of mobile telephony and improved internet access which brings with it, web 2.0 and social networking tools, has provided developing countries with connectivity that the agricultural research for development (ARD) sector cannot ignore.

 Questions that feed into this event include what strategies, policies and actions are needed to improve and sustain ICM adoption in ARD. How can we make content available, accessible and applicable at all levels among ARD stakeholders, including resource-poor farmers?    

 This week, the global ARD community will draw on these issues to identify and develop a strategic framework and action plan for consideration through:

 The outcomes of these action plans shall define the role of ICM stakeholders in building and strengthening the use of ICT in supporting agricultural research for development.

The first session begins later today with a “Marketplace” sharing activity.  For more on goings-on this week at the ICM event, I will be posting updates on the ICT-KM blog, Yammer and Twitter under the tag: ICM4ARD09.  Watch this space.

“Branching out” (photo credit: Meena Arivananthan)